10.‘You that participate with me in the present danger, let not any of you in this extremity go about to seem wise and reckon every peril that now besetteth us, but let him rather come up to the enemy with little circumspection and much hope and look for his safety by that.For things that are come once to a pinch, as these are, admit not debate, but a speedy hazard.
And [yet] if we stand it out, and betray not our advantages with fear of the number of the enemy, I see well enough that most things are with us.
For I make account, the difficulty of their landing makes for us, which, as long as we abide ourselves, will help us;but if we retire, though the place be difficult, yet when there is none to impeach them they will land well enough.For whilst they are in their galleys, they are most easy to be fought withal;and in their disbarking, being but on equal terms, their number is not greatly to be feared;
for though they be many, yet they must fight but by few for want of room to fight in.And for an army to have odds by land is another matter than when they are to fight from galleys, where they stand in need of so many accidents to fall out opportunely from the sea.So that I think their great difficulties do but set them even with our small number.
And for you, that be Athenians and by experience of disbarking against others know that if a man stand it out and do not fear of the sowsing of a wave or the menacing approach of a galley give back of himself, he can never be put back by violence; I expect that you should keep your ground and by fighting it out upon the very edge of the water preserve both yourselves and the fort.’
The English works of Thomas Hobbes of Malmesbury. Thucydides. Thomas Hobbes. translator. London. Bohn. 1843.
This text was converted to electronic form by optical character recognition and has been proofread to a high level of accuracy.
An XML version of this text is available for download,
with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted
changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.